Nico Collins Open To Texans Extension; Latest On Team’s WR Plans

A major element of the Texans’ surprise run to the divisional round was an uptick in passing efficiency with C.J. Stroud at quarterback. The play of the Offensive Rookie of the Year helped wideout Nico Collins enjoy a career year, and it could help him land a lucrative extension.

Having played three seasons in the NFL, the latter is now eligible for a second contract. Collins’ value saw a major spike over the course of the 2023 slate given his production compared to his first two seasons. The former third-rounder averaged 35 receptions and 464 yards per campaign in 2021-22, but Stroud’s arrival sparked a major step forward. Collins posted a statline of 80-1,297-8 in 2023, operating as Stroud’s top target.

To little surprise, the 24-year-old is open to parlaying his production into an extension. Collins recently confirmed his willingness to open negotiations when speaking to Aaron Wilson of KPRC2. Wilson notes, however, that it is currently unclear if the Texans and Collins’ agents have discussed a deal. Nevertheless, he adds that there is “definitely mutual interest” in an agreement keeping the Michigan alum in the fold beyond 2024.

Collins and 2023 third-rounder Tank Dell profile as giving Houston a productive 1-2 punch at the receiver position. For that reason, Wilson writes that the Texans are likely to be interested only in second- or third-tier WR options on the free agent market. The team is set to have considerable spending power in March, but other positions will represent more pressing roster needs. Collins could further boost his value with a strong follow-up campaign in 2024, something which will of course be easier if he remains the team’s leader in targets.

A new contract for tight end Dalton Schultz is also on the team’s radar, Wilson notes. The ex-Cowboy is interested in a re-up, and agreeing to one could provide Houston with three familiar pass-catching options for at least one more season. Changes on offense (including at the running back spot) could be taking place in the near future, but a major addition amongst available receivers would come as a surprise. Collins is therefore on track to showcase himself for the Texans or outside suitors next season in the event an extension does not come to fruition in the coming months.

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